Luis Anes, Primary teacher, Huelva, Spain

A teacher for 15 years, Luis has a degree in Humanities specializing in Psychology, Philosophy and Anthropology. He is also well versed in Human Resource Management. Luis actively participates in social media networks for education and is a regular at educational conferences and events. He also invests his time pursuing teaching-learning methodologies like gamification in the classroom, using chess as a pedagogical resource, game-based learning, social skills management and emotional education.

Person-Based Learning (PBL (ABP in Spanish)) is a concept based on two main ideas: focus on generating and reinforcing values of good people and generating good relationships between members throughout the educational community. Besides, it is part of an active role necessary for the success of the teaching-learning process. This does not mean that we put technologies aside. Reformulating Victor Koppers, I recall the power of the teacher’s attitude as a determinant even above his knowledge of the subject matter he imparts and, with these, the skills to put them into the practice in a classroom. In my classes, we handle all kinds of ICT, augmented reality, virtual reality, and digital applications of all kinds. However, technology cannot have the heart of a teacher, so they are only complementary. It doesn’t mean obviating the importance of methodologies. In my classes, we work with projects, gamification, game-based learning, and different types of diverse activities. What matters at the end of the day is if what we do make sense to the students, and validates the work of people behind; because people are the beginning and end of all methodology.

Do we listen to our students?
In their relationship with the students, teachers must show an ability to empathize with them, listen to them and give them their leading role. We must empower children to improve the world. This is not only important because they are the adults of the future, but also because they play an important role in the present. That is why the school must encourage every child to find their talent and face challenges with courage. Developing resilience and a positive attitude towards difficulties is essential. Although their level of literacy or calculation is important, I feel more confident that my students will succeed in life because of their empathy, resilience and self-confidence. There will come a time when you as a teacher will be a memory for your students, it is imperative we try to be a good memory. Likewise, a good relationship between school and families is important. Families must have an active role in schools and respect must prevail based on closeness, continuity and coherence between them.

Banish the Procustes Syndrome
Finally, it should not be forgotten that according to one of the most important studies in education, John Hattie (2018), the cooperation between teachers is the most relevant factor for educational success. The change needed for education has teachers, and the good management of school principals, as an engine of success. We grow together by sharing good teaching practices. A headmaster or headmistress is a leader rather than a boss. They must empower and inspire from example. In this way, for us to have happy children in schools, we also need happy teachers in their classrooms.

We live in a world where it is necessary to humanize humanity. Being happy should be the true meaning of life, and that’s where you need the attitude to be a better person and want to help others. Watching your students come to your lessons with a smile on their lips and eyes illuminated by learning. Isn’t that the best assessment?

A teacher who does not think he can improve the world will not be able to do so; a better world is possible and begins with education. Every teacher is an example in and out of the classroom, we are the engine of change.


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